GM? No way, no thanks

First, an advert for healthy eating brought to you by Earthmother productions. Worried about your health? Eat organic and for colour! Nature has kindly colour-coordinated its plant nutrients so you can mix-and-match. Step forward orange carotenoids for vitamin A production and purple and deeply-green antioxidants for cell-restoration.

If the veg is organic you get more antioxidants for your money. Here’s why: if you spray a plant with pesticides (which is how most western food is grown), then its ability to produce antioxidants is decreased. Antioxidants are the fighting army that protect a plant from pests and there are more in organic food because the organic plant gets to keep its antioxidant army. Fade on ad.

And the UK government wants to re-open the GM debate! Crikey, as if we don’t have enough to contend with just trying to grow a few unsprayed organic veg.

GM crops are modified in a lab to tolerate a herbicide (weed killer) or produce an insecticide (insect killer). Farmers have to buy the GM seed and the proprietary pesticide (umbrella term for herbicide, insecticide and fungicide).

If GM seeds or pollen arrive accidentally on a field, GM companies can sue farmers for patent-infringement. California voted to protect farmers against such lawsuits in August. It’s more fair if the polluter-company pays for GM contamination, as the Welsh Assembly government proposes – and not the hapless farmer.

The pro-GM marketing spin says GM can feed the world – how selfish of me to stop a technology that saves the hungry! But it’s a lie. There are no GM crops designed to help the poor. The current GM crops are engineered for insect and weed-spraying – not to improve yields, vitamin A, drought-prevention or any of the other mythical scenarios dreamed up by well-meaning but misguided press officers.

The (so-called) environment minister, Phil Woolas, said people like me have a year to prove GM is unsafe.

A body of evidence is growing; the ill-health effects on animals is well-documented. But the fact is the science has not been done. Commercial planting of GM especially in the US has pushed ahead regardless.  Listen, there has only been one trial published worldwide on humans eating GM food. And that showed worrying results.

I think we need more science on the health effects of GM.

And, Woolas – it’s not up to me to provide it.

On a gentler note: the ingredients for supper came from Better Food organic supermarket, which also grew the organic veg 12 miles away. The chard was steamed, the carrots grated and the beetroot, cut very small, was – new discovery – pan-fried in olive oil for 20 minutes with sliced onion. Served on a bed of brown rice; 1 mug of rice to 2 mugs of water, simmered for 30 minutes – enough for two, and a rice salad the next day.

7 responses to “GM? No way, no thanks

  1. Pingback: » GM? No way, no thanks » GM-free Food

  2. They should have a referendum on GM. Or not, because, as you say, E, the burden of proof is on THEM, not us. If there is any doubt, then don’t do GM at all. I wonder what the EU says about GM? By the way, if you want to see the effects of GM, come to N America, where half the population have been genetically modified to look like huge butterballs.

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  3. Another fine example of greed and profiteering at the expense of us common people. I say don’t mess with nature.

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  4. There’s a whole book full of really worrying scientific research just on health effects of GM seen in animal feeding trials and the one human one. It’s Jeffrey Smith’s Genetic Roulette. Every politician pushing GM (and ‘enviro minister’ Phil Woolas, who says we have to prove GM is harmful) should read it before they mouth off.

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  5. How can messing with nature ever be a good idea? More lies and taking risks with our – and our children’s – health. Wrong, wrong, wrong

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  6. A very well done and informative post. A good organization in the U.S. which also researches and petitions against GMO’s is Amberwaves.org

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  7. Great post. Good info about the greater antioxidants in organics…

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